The use of diverse social media programs such as Zoom to deliver courses, speeches, and training sessions has skyrocketed since the Coronavirus pandemic. It allows the trainees and trainer’s to interact with each other without having to transport from one place to another.
Getting to learn how to effectively manage a virtual training program is essential since it’s easy for the communicator or the recipient to easily get distracted while interacting with each other virtually. It would be rather disappointing for a teacher or a trainer to dedicate his time to teaching people who end up gaining zero or little knowledge in the long run.
If you’ve been a victim of this in the past, this article will offer ten (10) tips on how to boost engagement when handling your virtual training sessions.
Tools Needed For An Effective Video Training Program
- A social media program that supports live video and audio communication.
- A working device with a stable internet connection
- A clear voice, and a clear mind
- Your course materials
Tips To Effectively Manage A Virtual Training Program
- Prepare Yourself
- Be Punctual
- Test Run Your Pieces Of Equipment
- Have Your Audience Turn On Their Video
- Capture Your Audience’s Mind Within The First 3 Minutes
- Ask For Your Audience Contribution Every Ten Minutes
- Listen To Their Responses
- Be Prepared For Errors In-Transmission
- Call Your Audience By Names
- Introduce Visual Teachings
Trainers or tutors are expected to prepare themselves and the materials that will be used in the training program. It will give you a confidence boost if you have previously studied the study materials needed to give a training session.
If you want to have your audience’s attention, you’ll have to sound confident as possible while you plan on managing your time. You’ll further be able to captivate your audience’s attention while they put away other distractions and focus on your teachings.
Most online tutors tend to make the mistake of starting their training programs a few minutes late. This may seem harmless, but it paints a picture of you being unserious in the mind of your audience. You’ll have to be punctual if you want effective communication between you and your virtual target audience.
It makes more sense if you are 5 or 10 minutes early to give a little introduction about what you will be discussing, welcome participants, and try making friends with participants who are early. This will help build a connection between you and your students or audience at large making it easy for them to ask you questions.
Test Run Your Pieces Of Equipment
It is possible to be intellectually equipped, and punctual while you still encounter multiple errors during your training sessions. It is important to test your pieces of equipment ranging from your webcam, you can also find the perfect angle to have your live video session.
You can also test your speakers and ensure your microphone is working perfectly. You don’t want to start your training sessions with this type of error surfacing as it will make your audience lose interest in your teachings before you even start and is most likely to keep you off balance.
Have Your Audience Turn On Their Video
This is important in other to avoid talking to yourself during your training sessions, it will also assure you that your audience is paying close attention to what you are discussing without getting distracted by other things. Getting to see their faces also let you know when they are following your teachings or have gotten confused along the way.
It’s recommended that you ask your audience to turn on their video so you can see their faces and prevent them from being distracted. However, some people are camera shy and are most likely to not switch on their video or webcam.
It is therefore important for you to set rules making it compulsory for your target audience to have their video ready before the training program starts. You can further state your reasons for the rules
Capture Your Audience’s Mind Within The First 3 Minutes
This can only be possible if you’ve previously prepared yourself for the training program, you must be able to captivate your audience’s attention and have them focused on what you are teaching within the first three minutes.
The first three minutes are very crucial in having a successful training session, you must therefore introduce the course or topic you’ll be discussing and explain how it can be beneficial to them. You can also notable examples of people who have been successful while implementing your teachings.
key to an interactive training session is participation and engagement. Integrate opportunities for participation in the first five minutes (ideally in the opening) to set the expectation that you will be requesting engagement throughout the session.
Ask For Your Audience Contribution Every Ten Minutes
It is no news that training programs are going to get boring as the training progresses, it is also easy for your audience’s attention to be divided after the first 15 minutes of your training sessions.
You have to ensure that you and your audience are together by asking for their input every 10 minutes. You don’t necessarily have to ask them questions that would have them shaken up, but you can ask questions to prove that they understand all you’ve been teaching.
It makes more sense if you ask for their opinion about a topic of discussion before diving into it. It makes them more curious or anxious to know how.
Listen To Their Responses
Your target audience is going to be paying close attention to all you say even though you are not in the same location as they are, it makes sense for you to reciprocate the gesture by also listening to them whenever they say something or use the chat option.
While trying to test their level of understanding of what you are teaching, you must always wait for their responses in other to know how they view what you are teaching. Failure to acknowledge their responses will make them feel like their opinions do not matter and may make them lose focus in the long run.
There are cases where your audience may find it hard to answer some intelligent questions, this may not be due to a lack of concentration. When this happens, you should break down your questions into the simplest forms or try explaining while integrating Yes/No questions in other to receive quality feedback from your audience.
Be Prepared For Errors In-Transmission
Errors are bound to happen in every live chat and may include internet connection errors, hearing errors, etc. Your audience may miss out on some important parts of your teachings due to this, it is best to ensure that you and your audience are together no matter what happens. You are advised to do a quick recap of what you said while the connection was lost in other to ensure everybody is following your teachings.
Being prepared for these types of errors will enable you to keep calm whenever you or your audience experience an internet glitch. You don’t want to appear frustrated when you regain connection to your audience as this is most likely to have their attention divided. You have to always continue the training sessions with the same energy which you used in starting the training programs.
Call Your Audience By Names
If you’re more interested in making your audiences follow and understand your teachings rather than just talking, you should acknowledge them by their names. This will make them emotionally attached to your teachings, boost understanding, and promote questions and answers.
Getting to mention your audience name shows that you care about them individually. It is also best to thank them after every question or input from them If, for example, you ask a question and a user answers your question using the chat or audio feature, you can mention them by saying Thank you @Flora for that question or for that beautiful answer. It will make your audience want to engage more because the human mind is programmed to love being distinguished from a group of people.
Introduce Visual Teachings
You can introduce diverse forms of visual teachings in other to make your audience understand you better. You can show them handwritten notes by you, a video slide, a picture depicting what you are talking about, and many more.
A picture or video slide will explain further what you are talking about and will make it easy to pass your message to your target audience. You can ask questions in other to know if your audience understands what they are being taught.
In summary, we’ve examined 10 tips on how to effectively manage a virtual training program and the required tools to achieve this. Tutors or trainers are expected to be passionate about their training program in other to impact the best knowledge on their target audience.